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Sony SLT-A77 II First Impressions Review

May 2014 | By Richard Butler, Jeff Keller
Buy on GearShopFrom $1,098.00


Based on a pre-production SLT-A77 II running firmware 1.00

Sony has announced the SLT-A77 II which, as the name implies, is an overhaul of its semi-pro APS-C camera from 2011. The camera itself looks interesting, but so do some of the things it could be taken to signify.

Sony is not a company that could ever be accused of not trying. Eight years on from buying Konica Minolta's camera business, Sony has produced over forty interchangeable lens cameras based on at least three fundamental design approaches: conventional DSLRs, the fixed-mirror SLT system and the mirrorless E-mount models. Those cameras have continued to get better and the company has recently hit a particularly good run of form.

This success in terms of making very good, as well as very innovative, cameras starts to make sense of what has at times looked like a 'try lots of things, see what sticks' approach. The question is: once one of the designs really delivers on its promise, does it make sense to continue the other technologies in parallel?

Clearly Sony believes it does. Despite the leaps and bounds being made with the E-mount Alphas, both in terms of the on-sensor phase detection autofocus of the a6000 and the full frame sensors shoehorned into the A7 triplets, it has continued to develop its SLT cameras. The A77 Mark II features a new autofocus sensor, and it's much more than a refreshed version of an existing design. Instead the A77 II is built around the AF module with the most focus points of any camera on the market (79), covering an extremely wide area of the frame. It's also rated to work in lighting as low as -2EV. That doesn't necessarily make it quite as sophisticated at pro-grade DSLRs, since they have more cross and diagonal sensor elements, but it looks very impressive for a camera in this part of the market.

The autofocus capability combines with the camera's ability to shoot images at 12 frames per second to offer a compelling feature set. The A77 II also benefits from the autofocus tracking advances that have been included on recent Sony cameras, which use information from the main image sensor to identify and follow a given target.

Beyond that autofocus sensor, the A77 II gains an updated 24MP sensor (presumed to be a version of the sensor from the a6000, but without the on-chip sensor phase detection design) and all the benefits that the company introduced with its Bionz X processor. This means it gains three features: context-sensitive noise reduction, diffraction reduction technology and more-sophisticated sharpening.

Sony SLT-A77 II key specifications:

  • 24MP CMOS Sensor with gapless, offset microlenses
  • 12fps continuous shooting with autofocus (up to 60 JPEGs)
  • 79 point AF module with 15 cross-type AF points, covering 40% of frame
  • Increased control over AF behavior
  • 1080p60 movies with autofocus
  • Audio level monitoring during movie shooting
  • 2.4M dot OLED viewfinder
  • Pull-out three-hinge tilt/swivel 1.23m dot White Magic LCD screen
  • Built-in Wi-Fi with NFC
  • 1/8000th maximum shutter speed, shutter rated for 150,000 actuations
  • ISO 100 - 25,600 (Extendable down to 50, and up to 51,200 with multi-image combination)
  • Auto ISO customization
  • Optional, profile-based correction of vignetting, chromatic aberrations and geometric distortion
  • Top panel LCD
  • Stereo microphone and external mic socket
  • AF Micro Adjust

Focus advances

Although Sony stresses that the A77 II shouldn't be compared to pro-grade cameras (not least because it's much less expensive), it is starting to gain the kinds of paper specifications that suggest it could punch considerably above its weight. For instance, the improvements to the A77 II's autofocus system extend a long way beyond the focus sensor itself.

The Mark II gains a range of subject identifying technologies that Sony has introduced in recent models. As such, it offers Eye-AF, rather than just face detection. It also gains the most advanced version of 'Lock-On AF' that we've yet seen, which will use or allow you to specify an off-center starting AF point (previously most Sonys assumed your subject was the thing at the center of the frame, when you started tracking).

Unlike the A99, which used its on-sensor phase detection elements to track a subject's movement when it was between the focus sensor's focus points, the A77 II uses the focus points adjacent to the currently active point. In addition, the A77 II becomes the first Sony that lets you determine how doggedly the camera should stick with the current focus point - an option you'd usually only expect to find on very high level models. Better still, it lets you specify different values for video and stills shooting.

On top of this, the camera has an A99-style distance limiter that lets you specify the approximate range of focus distance over which you expect your subject to travel, to prevent the camera being distracted by near or distant subjects. Also added is an option to prioritise release or focus in continuous shooting, giving much greater control over the camera's continuous focus and shooting behavior. Overall, the A77 II represents a major step forward for Sony autofocus control.

What's in a name?

Interestingly, Sony's marketing implies that it is moving away from the 'Single Lens Translucent' name for the A77 II, instead adopting the phrase 'Translucent mirror DSLR.' This is a slightly unfortunate phrase to use, semantically, but only because the mirror is actually semi-transparent (translucence implies a diffuse image): the camera has all the elements implied by the term 'DSLR.'

The technology remains the same as before: a fixed, semi-transparent mirror redirects a portion of the light up to a dedicated autofocus sensor, while the majority passes through to the main imaging sensor. The light lost to the AF sensor has a slight cost in terms of high ISO image quality, but avoids the complexity of multiple moving mirrors, with the benefit that autofocus remains available at all times, including during video shooting.

SLT-A77 II vs. SLT-A77 key differences

 

Sony SLT-A77 II

Sony SLT-A77
Sensor New 24MP APS-C CMOS 24MP APS-C CMOS
Body construction Magnesium Alloy/Plastic Magnesium Alloy/Plastic
Viewfinder 2.4m dot OLED TruFinder 2.4m dot OLED TruFinder
Rear LCD 1.23m dot RGBW LCD 920k dot RGB LCD
AF Sensor 79 points (15 cross-type) 19 points (11 cross-type)
GPS No Yes
Wi-Fi Yes No
LCD Articulation Triple hinged (hinge/tilt/swivel) Triple hinged (hinge/tilt/swivel)
Custom settings recall on mode dial 3 1
Hotshoe type ISO standard with Multi-Interface connections Minolta-style
Maximum shooting rate 12fps 12fps
Maximum shutter speed 1/8000th 1/8000th
Video 1080p60 AVCHD 2.0 1080p60 AVCHD 2.0


If you're new to digital photography you may wish to read the Digital Photography Glossary before diving into this article (it may help you understand some of the terms used).

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This article is Copyright 2014 and may NOT in part or in whole be reproduced in any electronic or printed medium without prior permission from the author.

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Comments

Total comments: 599
123
Vitruvius
By Vitruvius (1 week ago)

Under specs for autofocus it lists both contrast detect (sensor) and phase detect. Is this right?
Also the wireless and smartphone remote control (Play Memories) is VERY limited at the moment. It is just a remote live view with a trigger. That's it. No apps work with the A77ii yet. But I hope they change that.

0 upvotes
nicolasrao
By nicolasrao (1 month ago)

It is much better reading when people back up their statements with actual links to their experiences with either screen shots, photos, or links to them. It makes the opinion more valuable to a genuine searcher.
Sifting through a lot of hot air...is a tiresome process.
I do see a few below.. very encouraging.

3 upvotes
solarider
By solarider (1 month ago)

Raw (ARW 2.3). I hope that's not proprietary... why not also have Adobe RAW files availability?

0 upvotes
Lassoni
By Lassoni (1 month ago)

This camera isn't serious. It would probably be more so if it had 10-16 megapixel. The ISO performance seems to be worse than A6000. Right now, A6000 looks to be much better camera. http://thenewcamera.com/tag/sony-a77-ii/

1 upvote
Eleson
By Eleson (1 month ago)

So you came back one week later to dizz' it even more? You must have a lot of feelings for it...

As for the a6000 comparison, your are probably right if your aim is to shoot test targets from a tripod.

It surprises me somewhat that in spite of coming back to thus camera over and over again haven't noticed that this is built to shoot moving targets with lots of cropping potential.
(sports/action BIF etc)
And that is simply not an a6000 task. For starters, it lacks the long reach lenses. But it also lacks the AF system for this.

Take a look around and see what better options you can find for sports/action in this cameras price range. Tell us what you found.

2 upvotes
Lassoni
By Lassoni (1 month ago)

D300s with superior AF, or some from canon camp.. 7d? 70d? Body of Sony a77m2 costs 1700 dollars where I live. Spending 340 dollars more you can get 6d body. It may have AF points (like the A6000, both much much much much more than original A77), but it's the "AF accuracy" that is still the biggest question mark.

0 upvotes
Eleson
By Eleson (1 month ago)

AF accuracy is always the question with PDAF. But it was never an issue with the original A77, so I doubt it will be that in this revision either.

I'm guessing $1700 is with the fab 16-50/2.8 DT SSM lens.

Comment edited 1 minute after posting
1 upvote
Lassoni
By Lassoni (1 month ago)

Nope, only body. It's more expensive than some nikon / canon bodies. D7100 being 1225 dollars, 70d 1300. No point buying sony at this point imo. Not until I can see some serious ISO performance. The original A77 was so soft @ even the lowest ISO, 100 or lower. I think it's been discussed to an end over the internet. Maybe the A77m2 is better, but the original A77 left me a very bitter mark, because I really wanted to like the camera. Hey, maybe I wasn't so good at times, it was my first DSLR after all. Just strange that the moment I get D7000 my pictures suddenly look alot more pleasing to me.. for a week I have sony, return get D7000 = instant better. Strange. Defect or design problem.

Comment edited 2 times, last edit 1 minute after posting
0 upvotes
codethought
By codethought (1 month ago)

Eleson wrote:

"I'm guessing $1700 is with the fab 16-50/2.8 DT SSM lens."

Lasson wrote:

"Nope, only body."

1100 for the body only model. I just got mine and have started playing with it.

I'm not sure why you had issues with your A77. Perhaps the lenses you were using needed to be fine tuned with you camera.. perhaps it was the model of lens you were using with the camera. Who knows. Personally I've had excellent results in both portraiture and landscape photography with the A77. And the A77II so far showing itself to be an outstanding camera for me. Everyone's mileage will vary. But for every single complaint I hear about Sony I hear LOADS of people loving theirs. Including Gary Fong who is now a huge Sony fan.

3 upvotes
Lassoni
By Lassoni (1 month ago)

@code yeah, probably could've used fine tuning. And yes 1700$ for body only, as that is the conversion from converting the price from euros (live in europe).

Comment edited 6 seconds after posting
0 upvotes
Vitruvius
By Vitruvius (3 weeks ago)

@ Lassoni - You should stop talking about things you don't have any experience. You say something about what other people said on the internet and by doing so become another one of those people on the internet that other read who have no actual experience with the camera and propagate false information. I OWN the A77 and the ISO performance is actually very good. The "problem" is that the camera does very little in-camera processing compared to other cameras. But if you set up profiles in Lightroom for your RAW files you get much better images than your comparisons. Stop talking about things you know nothing about.

1 upvote
Lassoni
By Lassoni (3 weeks ago)

I had a A77 1 for a week, and something like ISO 3200 was very much unusable for me. I always shoot raw, be it sony or nikon. Maybe sony does noise reduction to raws, but afaik nikon doesn't. So if I have both set to normal or no-NR, it can't be the "bad nr" to blame when I personally never use in-camera NR in either system.

Trying to say, I got vastly cleaner images @ 3200 with the D7000 than I did with the A77. For my use that was very important, as I took some of the D7000 photos @ 6400 too.

Regarding the AF.. yeah it had problems. I couldn't get a single sharp picture in the walk on the woods from trees and stuff. The camera/lens either had defect or it failed to get sharp focus at those light conditions.

Comment edited 2 times, last edit 3 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
Vitruvius
By Vitruvius (1 week ago)

For my 'work', I was able to deal with the noise fairly successfully in Lightroom up to ISO 3200. The advantage it had for me was the dynamic range, which is fantastic. I agree that the AF tracking on the A77 was disappointing and that is partially what I bought it for. A few weeks ago my A77 was bumped and fell into a lake. The lake was kind of wet. Just was told by Sony that it is not repairable. So I brought home the A77ii yesterday. I am sorry to hear about the bad price in Europe. Not fair. I hope the AF works better on the new A77ii.
Another feature I look forward to is the AF tracking speed control during video. Something I would really use and other cameras would not have.

1 upvote
Lassoni
By Lassoni (2 months ago)

Here was their hope of catching canikon for sports/action, with possible AF boost. Yet, they just had to use the 24 megapixel number, when they could've dropped the megapixels to 10-12, in favor for the fact that the translucent method is throwing some away. Because that could've regained some of it back. Come on... this is really laughably bad. This could've been the D400 many had asked for, and more.

Comment edited 2 times, last edit 53 seconds after posting
1 upvote
duartera
By duartera (2 months ago)

I've been shooting with my a700, for the last 6 years. I shoot mainly landscapes, indoor low-light situations, and infrequent indoor/outdoor portraits. When the a77 initially came out, I couldn't justify upgrading since I had no issue with my camera. However now that the M2 is coming out, I am thinking about it again. For those of you who have shot with both the a700 and a77, how would you compare the high ISO performance between the two? Even though have regularly pushed the a700 to 1000-1600, as we all know, it suffers BIG time and I must use heavy PP to get decent images. I have heard very mixed reviews about the low light performance of the a77. Would you consider the low-light performance upgrade between the a700 and a77 to be worth waiting for the a77 prices to drop even further? Or go with M2?

0 upvotes
Hugo600si
By Hugo600si (2 months ago)

I'd go with the M2, the extra high iso for the M2 will help, the a77 is not bad but its also not a high iso animal if that is important for you.
I had to get used to the noise of the a77, the a700 is a lot cleaner out of camera and at pixel level, part is due to the higher mpix count. With the right post processing settings in LR it is a joy to work with though.
Even though I kept my a700 as a backup I have not shot a single shot with it since getting the a77... that EVF is so much easier to work with for almost anything I personally do.

2 upvotes
cokeaddict
By cokeaddict (2 months ago)

I will stick to my a77. Improvements are good but to remove the ability to have GPS...? That just don't make any sense to me. WiFi is useless to me but GPS is fantastic. I will enjoy using my a77 for a few years until they bring out something that can convince me to upgrade. Until then, I love my camera.

1 upvote
FD North
By FD North (2 months ago)

I may be incorrect in saying this but my understanding is the WiFi capability will allow Geo-tagging photos from another device like a cell phone but with less battery draw on the camera. The options associated with WiFi are one of a few reasons I will be upgrading. I'm in the same boat as you, extremely happy with my A77. I'm looking forward to parking the A700 and having 2 variations of the A77 in my camera bag.

2 upvotes
Lassoni
By Lassoni (2 months ago)

better focusing > in-camera gps

0 upvotes
TwoHerbs
By TwoHerbs (5 days ago)

To me, the GPS was superfluous, never used, zapped too much power. Have shot with other cameras with GPS and usually just shut them off (I usually know where I'm shooting!). I've had my A77 Mark 2 for about 2 weeks, and just love it. It's replacing my loved A350 since at a soccer meet shoot a few weeks ago, a downpour of rain.......thus it's sitting in a container of dry rice and I'm just hoping.... Shot another soccer tournament last weekend.....just loved it.!

0 upvotes
TheEnthusiast
By TheEnthusiast (2 months ago)

Ever since I sold my A77 and all my APS-C lenses to go full-frame with the A99, I've sorely missed the compactness of the A77. The A99 beat the old A77 in low-light performance by a solid two stops, and the colors in the A99 are terrific. But the A99 is a boat anchor. While I can't give it up, I've been looking for something smaller-lighter as a second camera. At the top of my list have been the A7r and the Leica T. Both of those cameras have walk-around zooms that are somewhat compromised, apparently due to an attempt to attain the last measure of compactness.

One of the things I truly loved about the A77 was the superb 16-50 lens. It doesn't have the Zeiss name or even the G-designation, but it is relatively compact and a fantastic value. Its only significant flaw was some mid-image, barrel-like distortion that I noticed most when comparing RAW images to camera-corrected jpegs of the same shot. The A77 II with the 16-50 lens is a tempting package to me.

3 upvotes
Azurael
By Azurael (2 months ago)

I was thinking of getting an a77 (or II, now) to compliment my a99 and replace the a55 that I find difficult to use because of the shoddy viewfinder. Having handled the a77 a few times now, it didn't feel all that different in terms of size and weight to the 99 to me, I'm surprised you noticed such a difference... But I guess that having extensively used both, you're probably in a better position to judge. I can't say I find even the a99 heavy - or at least the weight becomes a lot less relevant once you attach the 70-200G :D I'd love an a7, but I think that might be breaking the bank for a toy I don't need :P Perhaps once the second generation comes out, I'll buy one of the originals cheaply to have some more fun with my OM lenses.

1 upvote
Vitruvius
By Vitruvius (2 months ago)

Top of page 4 - the SLT mirror does NOT redirect 1/3 of the light. It is about 1/3 of a stop of light.

Interesting that they would NOT have included the on-sensor phase detect AF from the a6000 in this camera in addition to the SLT AF sensors. I have about 7000+ actuation shooting action with my A77 and the AF tracking is actually very poor even with fast lenses and SSM / HSM.The only reason I would have spent an extra $400 on the new A77ii was for the same AF system as the a6000. I wonder why they would not have included this on the A77ii? If it is the same sensor why can't they combine the information from both AF systems? But I guess we will have to see how they compare.

0 upvotes
brendon1000
By brendon1000 (2 months ago)

The A6000 has on sensor phase detect points which only work with few lenses . The A77 II has phase detect points but none on the sensor. That means its faster than on sensor points and works with all compatible lenses including 3rd party options.

0 upvotes
BarnET
By BarnET (2 months ago)

I think vitru has a point.

If you use the the on sensor system one can flip the mirror up constantly. changing it into an mirrorless. And getting that extra sensitivity.

In action the mirror stays down giving you that fast reliable AF. Best of both worlds.

0 upvotes
Pablom
By Pablom (2 months ago)

AFAIK 1/3 of a stop means 1/3 of the light.

0 upvotes
Bjorn_L
By Bjorn_L (2 months ago)

1 stop = halving or doubling the light. So 1/3 stop would be 1/6th of the available light.

1 upvote
Michel Aristegui
By Michel Aristegui (2 months ago)

When you lose 1 stop, the light you receive is divided by 2^1=2. When you lose 1/3 stop, the light you receive is divided by 2^(1/3)=1.26, or multiplied by 1/1.26=0.79. So you lose 21% of the light.

2 upvotes
Vitruvius
By Vitruvius (1 week ago)

Thanks Michel. Also tested on the original A77 here at 8:30 mark.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Al1BI82nV9A
@BarnET - great idea but the mirror interferes with the lens, unfortunately. But you are able to take it out fairly easily and forgo AF if you want.

0 upvotes
andy1331
By andy1331 (1 week ago)

The On-Sensor AF-Sensors like in the a6000 or a99 are not that big, sensitive, fast and optimzed as explizit AF-PD-Sensors.
So the a6000 AF-System is really great for such a compact mirrorless camera but the a77II is even better and even more suitable for sports action.

0 upvotes
Peter K Burian
By Peter K Burian (2 months ago)

Why does the review not mention this?? 12fps with continuous AF and ***up to 60 frames in a single burst when in JPEG fine setting (with focus locked at the first shot)****

0 upvotes
Eleson
By Eleson (2 months ago)

Because that wouldn't be true?
AF is not locked in 12fps mode.

6 upvotes
Simon jackson
By Simon jackson (2 months ago)

dumb question but vs a6000?

1 upvote
Vitruvius
By Vitruvius (2 months ago)

I agree. I suspect the a6000 might be better AF since they used the same sensor but omitted the on-sensor phase detect AF capability in the A77ii. So the phase detect sensors in the A77ii may be better but they only have 1/3 of a stop of light to work with. Why wouldn't they use both systems ni combination?

0 upvotes
brendon1000
By brendon1000 (2 months ago)

Not true. On sensor phase points are smaller and less accurate. The A99 has 102 AF points on the sensor but they can't help to acquire focus. Only track focus once the main focus points lock focus.

The A77 has proper phase sensors which are bigger than on sensor points and works with all lenses including 3rd party ones.

1 upvote
Lassoni
By Lassoni (4 weeks ago)

A6000 probably better sensor/low light, but this one has better body. A6000 also has a big lag when changing aperture/shutter speed. It's noticeable and can cause you the miss some shots. Imo we should wait until sony decides to make A99m2, or something with body of this but without the translucent mirror.

0 upvotes
12345ccr
By 12345ccr (2 months ago)

51k ISO cap... not like i'd use anything near that but still 51k ISO cap...

0 upvotes
Kane1972
By Kane1972 (2 months ago)

The thing that seems to get missed on any Sony SLT camera is the fact it had TRUE Live View, which is something Canikon cannot say. In other words, what one sees in the EVF is the image they end up with. No more checking your shot, adjusting the settings and taking another, just adjust first and then shoot!

Also focus peaking. Has this been improved at all? Not sure it needs to be any better, but more colour options would be nice. This feature is invaluable to manual lens shooters.

10 upvotes
Vitruvius
By Vitruvius (2 months ago)

Although I LOVE my A77 and the live view, your stament is not accurate. Try looking through your A77 viewfinder at night. Ya, you won't see much. Kind of useless for low light shooting and since there is no optical viewfinder you have to take a shot and then review it to see what the camera is seeing.

0 upvotes
Eleson
By Eleson (2 months ago)

@vit. Turn off "setting effect".

3 upvotes
thebustos
By thebustos (2 months ago)

With setting effects turned off you basically get the view you'd have with an OVF.

3 upvotes
tbcass
By tbcass (2 months ago)

I disagree because I can see more with my A77 in dark situations than any of the SLRs I used to own. The biggest problem with the A77 is the inability to adjust EVF image parameters, a problem that apparently has been resolved with the A77ii.

2 upvotes
Vitruvius
By Vitruvius (1 week ago)

@Eleson - Thanks for the tip.

0 upvotes
Abuelo Paul
By Abuelo Paul (2 months ago)

Having owned my A77 for 18months, and fired off almost 30000 frames, I won't be upgrading yet. There appear to be very few benefits in this markII version.
My main criticisms of the A77 are:
Poor high ISO results
Constant problems with sensor spots after changing lenses
Poor after sales service ( lost the rubber eyepiece and can't get a replacement)
But on the plus side:
Easy to use
superb results
EVF previews the shot
Minolta glass compatibility
All in all why change when I'm happy with what I've got. I had the EOS 500D before.

1 upvote
VirtualMirage
By VirtualMirage (2 months ago)

I find my A77 does better at preventing dust on the sensor than most other cameras, especially those that have moving mirrors. While not a 100% preventive, I find the non-moving SLT does a pretty good job at minimizing the amount of dust that appears on the sensor.

My A700 had a higher likelihood of getting dust on the senor.

1 upvote
leewardism
By leewardism (2 months ago)

Just the sea of Minolta legacies at cheap prices
is worth staying with Sony, hey and no image stabilisation with in every lens, sometimes less is more.

Comment edited 41 seconds after posting
1 upvote
Boerseuntjie
By Boerseuntjie (2 months ago)

The eyepiece part is available for like $10 at B&H http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/850521-REG/Sony_FDA_EP12_FDA_EP12_Eyepiece_Cup_for.html
Change lenses when it's not windy

0 upvotes
Abuelo Paul
By Abuelo Paul (1 month ago)

Thats fine for you guys in the states, but I'm in Europe. B&H don't ship, Sony .EU show part no longer available. I change lenses in house, or in car, not out in the open.

0 upvotes
Boerseuntjie
By Boerseuntjie (1 month ago)

I'm sure if you contact Sony in EU and order the part they will be willing to help

0 upvotes
Mike Riach
By Mike Riach (1 month ago)

Hi,

try contacting minolta-mania on ebay as they have loads of Sony accessories.

0 upvotes
peevee1
By peevee1 (2 months ago)

The best feature about A77 (and mk2) is that 16-50/2.8 lens which is a couple of classes higher than the typical 18-55/3.5-5.6 disgraces all other companies like to include in their kits.
Sony should also provide a kit with their 18-250 superzoom for the customers who like such things.

0 upvotes
mosc
By mosc (2 months ago)

It's true, the 16-50 is quite reasonably priced at $750, less as a kit, compared to other versions. It's also much wider than the cannon version, for example (24 vs 27 equiv) which seems much more valuable than 88mm vs 75mm at the long end.

1 upvote
Underdog 3000
By Underdog 3000 (2 months ago)

at 5x the price of a kit I would hope it would be better.

Seriously.... that's the best feature?

0 upvotes
Vamp898
By Vamp898 (2 months ago)

Canon also offers the 17-50 f/2.8 and Sigma also offers an EX 17-50mm f/2.8

I think they can be compared to the 16-50mm. The Canon one is worse and more expensive, the Sigma one is on par but about half price.

0 upvotes
hippo84
By hippo84 (2 months ago)

Vamp898 Sigma is not so sharp wide open and not fast and stable AF.

1 upvote
peevee1
By peevee1 (2 months ago)

"Canon also offers the 17-50 f/2.8"

You mean 17-55? Not as a $500-600 kit lens. At $1200, it is not something most buyers would buy for $999 70D body. For $2200 the combo simply does not make any sense, you can buy 6D+24-105/4 cheaper and it will have greater range and greater image quality etc. And 17mm on Canon smaller APS-C is like 27mm equivalent, not 24mm equivalent of the Sony - big diff.

Comment edited 2 times, last edit 4 minutes after posting
1 upvote
sabink
By sabink (2 months ago)

No GPS??? Typical! Thanks, but no thanks!
I will stay with my current Sony camera until Sony produces something better without "forgetting" some of the options I currently have and if this does not happen soon I will switch systems to a company that invests in software/firmware upgrades rather than new models with different limitations!!!

3 upvotes
hippo84
By hippo84 (2 months ago)

Is there any camera in the world with no limitations?

5 upvotes
Doug
By Doug (2 months ago)

Cant believe they've removed this feature. Its great being able to geo-tag as per old 77. Sony cant seem to make up their mind. Wanted to upgrade my HX9V which has GPS and the HX60 in the UK has this feature removed so had to get a 'grey' import !!!

2 upvotes
Vitruvius
By Vitruvius (2 months ago)

The same battery last 10% less time. Presumably the WIFI and NFC are eating battery power so that might have caused them to toss the GPS. Stupid.

0 upvotes
rhk22463
By rhk22463 (2 months ago)

The fact GPS is no longer built in makes this camera a NO GO area for me.
WIFI/NFC is something I don't need nor do I want to introduce the risk of hackers accessing the camera remotely via WIFI... so to me the decision to trade in GPS in favour of WIFI is a big mistake. I'll stick with my current Sony SLT that still has GPS built-in !

1 upvote
geert56
By geert56 (2 months ago)

What is the benefit of WiFi when i take almost every shot as RAW?
No TV will be able to show your RAW. Leave the WiFi for the people that shoot JPEG's to put on Facebook. If that's all you want from a camera then buy a Experia smartphone. I'll stay with my A77.

Comment edited 43 seconds after posting
0 upvotes
nerkles
By nerkles (2 months ago)

Sony's website says it does have GPS.

0 upvotes
nerkles
By nerkles (2 months ago)

Nevermind. It did for a while, but now it doesn't. Must've been a typo, or errant copy/paste.

0 upvotes
Miguel Rodríguez
By Miguel Rodríguez (2 months ago)

Wow, the noise at 1600 looks terrible... Fuji and Olympus are way better:

http://pliki.optyczne.pl/Sony_A77mkII/16_50/DSC08305.JPG

Anyways at this time the is too much speculation, so let's wait a bit.

1 upvote
Vitruvius
By Vitruvius (2 months ago)

Sony has far less in-camera noise reduction than Oly. What you gain with Sony and lose with Oly is the dynamic range. Check DXO Mark. I take my A77 RAW files into lightroom and I can selectively reduce the noise as I want and still retain far more information. But if you want out-of-camera JPEGs then Oly is the easier workflow solution.

2 upvotes
Polytropia
By Polytropia (2 months ago)

No 4K? How do they expect to compete?

1 upvote
OBI656
By OBI656 (2 months ago)

4K for $1200.00 ? Right ...

1 upvote
EthanP99
By EthanP99 (2 months ago)

for aps-c cameras:

Canon, no 4k?

Nikon, no 4k?

Pentax, no 4k?

Fuji, no 4k?

How will they ever compete!

Sony already has several 4k cameras, including the fs700 (aps-c)

20 upvotes
Dave Luttmann
By Dave Luttmann (2 months ago)

Dont need 4k for still shots.

3 upvotes
tabloid
By tabloid (2 months ago)

Stills are 4K equivalent.

1 upvote
12345ccr
By 12345ccr (2 months ago)

What is there to compete with?

0 upvotes
naththo
By naththo (2 months ago)

And how can video card cope with 4K nowaday, most video card are STILL not able to work well with 4K video in full screen, they still sluggish. Its a long way off. Plus 4K is over kill for hard drive space, it is utterly stupid. 1920 x 1080 is enough to me for video thats it.

0 upvotes
Polytropia
By Polytropia (1 month ago)

GH-4 is what they have to compete with. If I was buying a sub-$2000 non-DSLR (i.e. EVF-based) like the A-77, E-M1, GH-4, then I would have a real hard time going any direction but GH-4.

Tabloid is right, stills are 4K-equivalent. But what you're all not considering is that 4K is stills. I.e., GH-4 gives you freaking 30 FPS of 8-megapixel stills. Just think about that for a second!

Panasonic is the only company who understands the future. And has been for a long time. The only future they didn't foresee (but should have) was Fukushima, but lesson learned.

0 upvotes
nicolasrao
By nicolasrao (1 month ago)

Panasonic has and now even in the FZ-1000 a good travel camera. Utility with quality.

Comment edited 1 minute after posting
0 upvotes
Vitruvius
By Vitruvius (3 weeks ago)

4k for $1k in camera recording is available on the FZ1000. Not APS-C but low light stills performance seems almost as good as any APS-C on the market. Otherwise try Sony RX-10.

0 upvotes
OBI656
By OBI656 (2 months ago)

I am always amazed how many people is bashing new cameras design by qualified engineers with many, many years of experience in camera design.

Non of these critics on the other hand can show some outstanding photography-portfolio beside some louse photos of sunset taken with $3000.00 lenses and latest DSLR cameras.

25 upvotes
Leandros S
By Leandros S (2 months ago)

...and yet these engineers try to sell to those inept fools who dare buy $3000 lenses. I wonder why.

0 upvotes
xMichaelx
By xMichaelx (2 months ago)

Engineers rarely design; they take a designer's (or a design team's) work and try to make it happen, with some back and forth.

Also, these great designers you worship also have us New Coke, the Pinto, and the Zune.

By your seriously flawed and poorly thought-out "logic", EVERY product is a great product. You can't possibly believe that.

2 upvotes
Antonlm
By Antonlm (2 months ago)

At its inception, the Zune was 10x the mp3 player the ipod was. Had the largest HD at the time and was cheaper. 15 bucks a month subscription to their music store and you got 10 songs free monthly.

4 upvotes
OBI656
By OBI656 (2 months ago)

xMichaelx, when I say : "new cameras design by qualified engineers..." Yes, new cameras design by qualified engineers from concept and inside camera function, element layout and camera internal conceptuality.
You may have in mind most likely industrial design which belongs to collaboration in between Industrial designers and those I have named in first place, qualified camera engineers.

0 upvotes
Leandros S
By Leandros S (2 months ago)

@Antonim: Since when is 15 bucks for ten songs a good deal?

0 upvotes
Antonlm
By Antonlm (2 months ago)

I did not say that 15 bucks for 10 songs was a good deal.

Comment edited 54 seconds after posting
0 upvotes
Polytropia
By Polytropia (1 month ago)

You're really going to defend the Zune? What are you smoking?

It was in NO way "10x the mp3 player the ipod was". By what metric did you judge that?

Certainly not any of these:
• battery life
• reliability
• good looks
• quality of software
• customer service
• music selection

Zune failed hard on all those and they wanted to bill your credit for $180 per year! What a joke!

0 upvotes
nicolasrao
By nicolasrao (1 month ago)

Designers and engineers do a great job and are constantly improving and proving More's law. Every enthusiast like me knows that it is not the engineer who decides what is going where... or they would put the best they can into every model...it's the marketing guys who call the shots...guys please don't go shoot the piano player...he is the one who keeps the mood going...even a simple fact like a square format using the maximum a circular lens can afford is not put to use for e.g. Not engineers folks..market trends and marketing heads decide.

0 upvotes
gmke
By gmke (2 months ago)

I am NOT interested in this camera because of some Sony snake oil. Here we have the world's premiere maker of photo sensors building a defect into a camera design that seriously hampers deep ISO. The claim is that the "translucent" mirror only steals 1/3 of an f-stop. Go to the SLT-A77 jpeg noise page and choose the Oly E-M5, Nikon D5100, and Panasonic G3 for comparison, all at normal or standard noise reductions. Note that the noises at ISO-3200 on the E-M5 and D5100 are very well controlled. Then drop the ISO back to 800 and notice how noisy the A77 getup is. Roughly speaking, one might conclude that the translucent mirror makes the A77 as bad as the four thirds sensor in the Panasonic G3. That's a two stop drop, not 1/3. These observations make it very difficult to care about improvements in the AF system.

Comment edited 1 minute after posting
1 upvote
OBI656
By OBI656 (2 months ago)

You are funny ...

11 upvotes
gmke
By gmke (2 months ago)

Funny odd or funny haha? Or both? Any answer is good. No prob. I think your point in the other post is well taken. The possession of a great camera does not a great photographer make, nor does the sole availability of an average camera rule out the capture of an awesome shot. One example, I sucked up a smidgen of pride and got a pocket camera, Canon's SX-280HS, that we took on our last vacation. We came home with some very nice shots, counter to what I expected. Peering into the details was a bit of a surprise too. I often thought, I wouldn't have shot this one THAT way, even though the result was very satisfying. It seems backward, shoot and think. Think and shoot is more comfortable to me. The funny thing in the camera market, and with camera journalism, is the game played. That and the fact that you have to fork over quite a bit of money. My priorities are not universal. Although I do not need deep ISO all the time, I am keen to get as much as possible at any given price point.

1 upvote
VirtualMirage
By VirtualMirage (2 months ago)

First, you are not comparing sensor sensitivity as much as you are really comparing JPEG processing capability. I'll admit that compared to the current cameras, the A77's JPEG processing is not the best. The A77II has a much improved JPEG processing algorithm that should help improve image quality. But since I shoot only RAW, it doesn't really affect me either way.

Second, go back to those other cameras and look at their EXIF information using identical ISOs. You will see the shutter speed varies which will add to the discrepancy in sensor sensitivity. This gives as around 1/3-1/2 of extra advantage to the other cameras that are shooting at a slower shutter speed than the A77 at the same ISO.

Lastly, it isn't a 2 stop difference between them when you factor the above. Just look at the other review sites that do a better job at equalizing the playing field.

3 upvotes
123Mike
By 123Mike (2 months ago)

It has nothing to do with "jpeg". It has to do with more noise combined with poor in-camera denoising algorithms. But, times have moved on, and things have gotten better. I'm sure the A77ii will be better both in terms of initial noise and denoising. I have an A6000 and I see see that the denoising algorithm is better.
People should stop calling it "jpeg engine". It's so silly. The jpeg part is just plain old run-of-the-mill compression algorithm. It is all about the pixels that go in *before* the jpeg compression algorithm. Who came up with that anyway? "jpeg engine". Good grief. The jpeg algorithm hasn't changes in, what, 20+ years?

2 upvotes
VirtualMirage
By VirtualMirage (2 months ago)

123Mike, the reason people call it a JPEG engine or JPEG processing is because when saving an image as JPEG, the image processor is applying certain techniques that only get applied to images being saved as JPEGs (they do not get applied to the RAW). So while JPEG compression is a standard, the work done to those images that is exclusive to just the images that get saved as JPEGs are not.

To just call it image processing or processing engine can mislead those that are not informed to think that the same work and processing is being done to every image regardless if it is JPEG or RAW. Calling it JPEG engine or JPEG processing let's individuals know of specific processing steps that are exclusive to images being saved as JPEG (lens correction, DRO, area specific noise reduction, etc.).

2 upvotes
Fri13
By Fri13 (2 months ago)

It is again the same problem as with "dynamic range" or "micro contrast" what are just meaningless terms for actual technical information. The correct ones are "Exposure Range", "Contrast" (need to understand its meaning by content) and then "A/D processor" what is responsible to register photons hitting to sensor pixels based ISO algorithm. And there the "dynamic range" comes to play what gets changes by the uses ISO level by boosting the electricity output for the sensor, without affecting the Exposure Range.

The A/D chip process all the data and is responsible to as well store the digital data as RAW file, JPEG file or Video file and apply different settings and manipulate data following them.
The JPEG can be saved in different look, but with a same algorithm and different compression and other JPEG feature.

The "JPEG engine" is just a mumbo jumbo for those who doesn't get the technology or doesn't care how it works.

1 upvote
nicolasrao
By nicolasrao (1 month ago)

If Sony had a better noise reduction system, their camera's would have out sold most Canikon cameras long ago. It is their weak link.They have excellent designs, lenses etc. Fixed mirror is not new, the Canon Pelix had it decades ago..it did not succeed then for the same reason it may not succeed now..light transmission. Otherwise the list of advantages that a camera without a moving mirror has, is too long to elucidate here. I started using SLR's in the late 70's late even then but none of us ever took a shot at 1/15 second as the mirror vibration was present during the entire exposure. Even 1/8 second had vibration for only half the exposure making it superior on tripod of course. I could write a page on mirror woes...but enough.

0 upvotes
Vitruvius
By Vitruvius (1 week ago)

It is about 1/3 of a stop. See 8:30 here for tests.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Al1BI82nV9A
No snake oil, only poor in camera compression. Hope my new A77ii is better.

0 upvotes
plasnu
By plasnu (2 months ago)

It seems like rather minor update for SONY, but it's much better than adding countless useless marketing gimmick sometimes Sony have done to their cameras. Good job.

Comment edited 1 minute after posting
3 upvotes
lehill
By lehill (2 months ago)

In Specifications, Autofocus section it lists PDAF, focus point modes and others including "Contrast Detect (sensor)". Is that true?

1 upvote
ZTJ
By ZTJ (2 months ago)

One of the claims on this new camera is significant improvement in AF accuracy. Perhaps, at least in single AF mode, it finalizes with contrast like the mirrorless hybrid AF cameras do?

Or perhaps it's nothing more than a botched copy/paste job.

1 upvote
Underdog 3000
By Underdog 3000 (2 months ago)

Looks like a great camera down to 1 EV.
Too bad its HUGE

0 upvotes
austin design
By austin design (2 months ago)

Huge?! -- what utter nonsense. It's a DSLR. If you prefer some compact camera to keep in your purse, fine, but don't fault this camera for being precisely what it's meant to be.

5 upvotes
Peiasdf
By Peiasdf (2 months ago)

You have the wrong image up for VF comparison.

0 upvotes
PhotoLouP
By PhotoLouP (2 months ago)

This may be a good replacement for my A580--I have Sony dSlrs and Samsung NX series. Both are very capable, but different. For the Sony, some things that are extremely important to me:

1. Battery compatibility. Finally the right battery!
2. Flash--rarely need these days with the current sensors. I learned on ASA 64 slide film so anything above ISO 400 is bonus.
3. AF--will see how well it does for action/wildlife.
4. Articulated screen--years ago was a skeptic, but love it now that I have learned to use it.
5. Weather sealed--finally!

Misses

1. Two card slots, still want to write raw to one and jpeg to the other.
2. Price--could have WAF if under 1K, that is the limit for me.

Questions

1. Need to see how the camera works with manual lenses. I love the A580 focus check feature.
2. Smile detect--seems like a dumb feature, but it really is incredible on the A580 for family situations. Sometimes these "non pro" features are surprising.

Look forward to more details!

4 upvotes
alexpaynter
By alexpaynter (2 months ago)

I am struggling to see why this is better than an a6000. I am assuming it has the same processor, same sensor, same autofocus etc.

It has a bulkier body which some may find easier to hold.

0 upvotes
Thoughts
By Thoughts (2 months ago)

More A moutn lenses to choose from?

5 upvotes
Eleson
By Eleson (2 months ago)

Not the same autofocus. These are based on a separate , dedicated AF chip and module, not on the sensor. Allowing it to be larger and basically better.

6 upvotes
Xentrax
By Xentrax (2 months ago)

Why does A6000 claim 92% AF coverage then? A77-II has much less AF coverage area.

I don't know how well AF sensors in the corners perform compared to center one, but still A77-II does not give an option as it does not have any corner sensors at all, at least press release does not mention it.

Besides that A6000 AF system does not really need calibration, while separate AF sensor plate in A77-II will have to be adjusted at the authorized service center. Otherwise, as factory calibration is not very good, one has to introduce microadjustments for every particular lens.

0 upvotes
Eleson
By Eleson (2 months ago)

The coverage is smaller, but the the practical difference is small. On sensor AF sensors are small to not disturb the image capturing. Having a separate AF module allows for larger sensors and much better low light capabilities. Cross sensors are better at locking on to different types of targets, that have contrasting lines in different directions.
Larger sensors make it easier to lock on to subjects, and that allows for tracking of subjects.

Yes , separate sensor module means that there is a risk for alignment issues, but saying that factory calibration is poor is pushing it, and yes the a77ii have micro-calibration for 30(?) lenses, but on my a77 the sensor is spot on.

I would bet that this is more sensitive on a traditional DSLR, as the AF relies on 2 moving mirrors instead of one fixed. Yes, two. One semitransparent that direct half of the light to the OVF, and lets half of thru to the AF mirror, attached to the main mirror. That second mirror directs light to the AF module.

3 upvotes
Wolfgang Fieger
By Wolfgang Fieger (2 months ago)

More and better body controls?
Better view finder?

0 upvotes
Lucas_
By Lucas_ (2 months ago)

IMO those are OK! I'm glad Sony kept the excellent form factor (ergonomics) and buttons/dials arrangement. The EVF is also the same, best in industry for this level of camera.
I really think Sony did a fantastic job in not changing what was already great. The price also seems quite reasonable too!

1 upvote
Gaëtan Lehmann
By Gaëtan Lehmann (2 months ago)

Some nice things:
* no more useless non customizable help "?" button!
* enhanced AF
* better frame coverage
* more AF points
* low light
* distance range
* some customizations possible
* wifi
* tethering
* enhanced LCD display
* auto ISO in M mode (?)

Some new bad things:
* GPS is gone
* really good AF assist lamp is gone
* must press the button to turn the dial, really?

Still some bad things from the A77:
* no exposure compensation display on the top lcd

And still many good things:
* triple hinge LCD - this thing is incredibly useful!
* AF in live view as good as in the viewfinder
* high quality viewfinder
* excellent ergonomy
* high quality case
* 1/8000 max shutter speed
* 1/250 sync speed
* very low latency shutter release
* up to 12 fps
* level display

And some unknown:
* less noise in low light in th VF?
* faster switch between the viewfinder and the rear display?
* fixed the very poor flash performance of the A77?

Comment edited 6 minutes after posting
15 upvotes
Ivo Tonev
By Ivo Tonev (2 months ago)

Very well put!
Exactly my thoughts, and I cannot seem to justify the GPS and AF assist lamp been dropped.

0 upvotes
Polytropia
By Polytropia (1 month ago)

Maybe it doesn't need to focus anymore. And who cares where you were.

0 upvotes
steve_hoge
By steve_hoge (2 months ago)

OK, are any shooters out there really using Memory Stick media? I wonder if they'd have had room for GPS hardware if they'd left out the MS slot...

0 upvotes
thebustos
By thebustos (2 months ago)

The card slot is SD or memory stick, so just one slot.

1 upvote
whitebird
By whitebird (2 months ago)

Still using MS HG Pro media here. Very fast and reliable (most important thing really) if not compatible with so many other devices.

2 upvotes
Ron Poelman
By Ron Poelman (2 months ago)

Perhaps,
but one $5 adapter, two Micro SD cards,
equals one immense Memory Stick slot;
this is a problem ?

1 upvote
Spectro
By Spectro (2 months ago)

I was impressed the a77 have an IR AF assist light, similar to the one found on speedlights (better then the regular bulb). So they gone from best AF assist light to lesser, with a pop up flash. Having none is the worst. To think of it my A7 doesn't have any AF assist nor a pop up. I manually focus with that camera more anyways. Even that I get some misses.

2 upvotes
ZoomZoom Diva
By ZoomZoom Diva (2 months ago)

The question becomes is this FINALLY the camera that is worth getting to replace my antique Konica-Minolta 7D... and it will be good to see a full review to see if it is a significant step forward from the A77 regular model.

I'm one of the odd ducks who actually is interested in Sony for the on body stabilization and that I can continue to use my existing lenses.

3 upvotes
Wolfgang Fieger
By Wolfgang Fieger (2 months ago)

Do yourself a favour and do the upgrade. I used the 7d in former days, loved it, and still take it out once in a while. But even compared with the A700 it already felt, well very outdated. Image quality is still very good in good light, but avoid anything above ISO 800...
AF speed is lame compared to the usefull quickness and responsiveness of the new models.
And the monitor is just lurky....

Comment edited 1 minute after posting
2 upvotes
Yoggie
By Yoggie (2 months ago)

Can GPS data be transferred from a cell phone via WiFi/NFC to the A77ii? I realize we probably wont know for sure until a full test, but if it can then I wont be as worried about the lack of GPS on the camera.

0 upvotes
maximuscr
By maximuscr (2 months ago)

It's possible the other way round or afterwards on your pc with several geotagger apps like this one:
https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.tappytaps.android.geotagphotospro&hl=de

0 upvotes
Yoggie
By Yoggie (2 months ago)

That is an option, but I prefer the method of having the GPS data added to the RAW picture at time of capture. It is way easier for the user if the process is fully automated.

4 upvotes
Michael Foran
By Michael Foran (2 months ago)

For that matter, would the WiFi be able to triangulate coordinates from multiple WiFi sources?

0 upvotes
Eleson
By Eleson (2 months ago)

There is room for a playmemories App to do that.

0 upvotes
braisim
By braisim (2 months ago)

I have to say I don't understand why GPS has been replaced with WiFi/NFC. I am an A77 owner and I do find the GPS useful. Frankly I struggle to see what real benefit WiFi would give me. The best quality images from the A77 measure some 24 MB. So I can transfer this to my phone (after having set all of that up on my smartphone) and then post it on flickr or facebook. And then have that transfer take 10 minutes as I'm in an area without 3G let alone 4G and then have my carrier charge me for all of that data transfer, because I'm abroad. And then have my smartphone battery last only 6 hours instead of a full day. I don't see the point. On a camera like this, unless one wants to use remote control (which seems like a pretty niche activity) I don't see the value of WiFi/NFC. Please educate me.

8 upvotes
Eleson
By Eleson (2 months ago)

remote Control.

8 upvotes
laughingor
By laughingor (2 months ago)

wifi does not required to connect via mobile data. it is an internal link between camera and other wifi devices(tab, phone, laptop). I always use it to share few photos taken of the days. instead all photos, so don't worry about battery drain.

1 upvote
BarnET
By BarnET (2 months ago)

In my area WiFi hotspots are common. And an tablet is easier to carry as my 15.6 inch laptop.
You have some solid arguments that do not apply to the larger public.

2 upvotes
photogalleryonline
By photogalleryonline (2 months ago)

Its handy when tranferring to ipad for editing and yes upload to facebook, but i agree total waste of time on a smart phone, when i travel OS i take ipad and pocket wifi and buy a sim car OS, that way i can keep up to date with friends and family they can keep up to date with my pics and also it gives me back up on the ipad if the camera or SD card fails or gets stolen. ....provided you don't keep your ipad with your camera gear. Interested in when you use GPS I find it totally useless, slows the whole camera down and sucks battery power, I have an A77 and a 6D and I leave both wifi and gps (on the canon off) and the gps off on the A77, only turn on the wifi on the canon when i need to suck images off it...its is more convenient and quicker than apples stupid sd card reader

2 upvotes
Andy Crowe
By Andy Crowe (2 months ago)

> but i agree total waste of time on a smart phone

I've used my smartphone as a remote screen / shutter for my GX7 loads of times, it's a very nice feature to have.

0 upvotes
braisim
By braisim (2 months ago)

I guess I'm never in a situation when I would find remote control useful. Maybe for group photos it might be nice, but then there is always the self-timer or maybe the Sony accessory remote can do this too? I like to tag my holiday photos with location info when on holiday so I find GPS useful for that. I can get a day or so of casual shooting out of the battery so I don't find this a problem and I always have a spare. Sometimes I bring a notebook PC with me on holiday to copy photos onto the hard drive but a cable works just fine for this. Everyone's phot needs are different but I find for me that GPS is more useful than WiFi.

1 upvote
straylightrun
By straylightrun (2 months ago)

Then don't buy the a77 and get a camera with GPS. Problem solved.

0 upvotes
Artpt
By Artpt (2 months ago)

Consider the phone connectivity as useful for securing the camera on an elevated monopod for another perspective....it is a bit of luck, but there are some great shots overhead...using a light camera helps of course....

0 upvotes
steve_hoge
By steve_hoge (2 months ago)

Remote control is a compelling rationale for WiFi - image transfer, not so much. For that there's always EyeFi.

0 upvotes
Lucas_
By Lucas_ (2 months ago)

I rarely use the gps on my 3 cameras, it sucks too much battery!

0 upvotes
austin design
By austin design (2 months ago)

straylightrun, you mean A77II, not A77. And, FYI, commenting on a camera's design -- whether we like it and why -- is what this section is all about. So kudos to the OP for sharing his entirely germane opinion.

1 upvote
Eleson
By Eleson (2 months ago)

@dpr. with image quality being toss between the different cameras and sensor sizes, I think it would be helpful to exdend the testing with controlled AF performance tests, split up in video/stills and viewfinder/liveview or something like that.

The differences are much bigger in the AF area than they are in image quality itself.
Testing that could also also drive the (mirrorless) market in the AF area and highlight those who do it well.

The world is more than shooting sleeping cats in the dark. :)

4 upvotes
Treeshade
By Treeshade (2 months ago)

Could this be the long-awaited D400 (D9300) and EOS 7D mk2 ?
( No. Those who want a D400/7D2 are often too heavily invested into the lens system to switch.)

0 upvotes
Eleson
By Eleson (2 months ago)

Maybe true, but it is a benchmark that they need to beat for sports/action/wildlife.
How long are people willing to wait if they fear that the offer will be late and not up to par, but still more expensive?

5 upvotes
Marvol
By Marvol (2 months ago)

I'm afraid Treeshade is right though. CaNikon don't need to do anything to beat this Sony. People who have a D400 or 7D are very unlikely to switch - and don't CaNikon know it.

Regardless, as I've said earlier, Canon are going to add GPS and Nikon will have half a stop cleaner ISO 12800 so their cameras will be trumpeted as better because of that anyway.

0 upvotes
Eleson
By Eleson (2 months ago)

True, but try shooting BIF on a tripod using LCD with Canikon. :)
There are simply stuff that is unique for every brand, so it'll find its users.

4 upvotes
MarshallG
By MarshallG (2 months ago)

If it took Canon EF mount lenses with full compatibility... then it would give Canon one heck of a challenge.

2 upvotes
WBateman
By WBateman (2 months ago)

As a Nikon user, I find the A77 MkII announcement to be completely demoralizing. The best Nikon can do in a crop sensor is 6 fps at 24 mp, and the buffer on that is still slow. So how can Sony come out with twice the frame rate at the same resolution, with more autofocus points, at presumably a price very similar to the D7100 that I have? If Nikon released this camera, it would be the D300 follow-up and would be priced around the $2,000 range. I'm on a tight budget and wouldn't be able to replace all my third-party lenses with Sony mounts if I decided to switch over, so it is very frustrating for me.

12 upvotes
ric63
By ric63 (2 months ago)

The speed is achieved due the the Sony being an SLT not SLR. It has no moving mirror to contend with so this is where the speed advantage lays.

1 upvote
Eleson
By Eleson (2 months ago)

@bateman.
That the situation some will need to think about. Does the technology I'm invested in have architecture to ever give me the performance I already can get elsewhere at a lower cost.
And for those who stay, some will feel like they just have to bend over and take it, and can't do anything about it.

I'm not saying 'switch' , but i am saying like the choice you make.

2 upvotes
Vitruvius
By Vitruvius (1 week ago)

@ WBateman - Exactly why I switched from Canon EOS to Sony about a year ago. Sold my Canon lenses for one good Sony lens and will rebuild from there. Canon and Nikon are sitting high and mighty on their "we serve pros" perch and I am happy to see SOMEBODY make them actually try to innovate again.

0 upvotes
sunnycal
By sunnycal (2 months ago)

Same cRaw? No lossless comressed (or uncompressed) raw?

0 upvotes
Marvol
By Marvol (2 months ago)

Yes.
No.

Having gotten that out of the way, please do show us some of your pictures that were RUINED because of Sony's compressed RAW.

15 upvotes
Deliverator
By Deliverator (2 months ago)

"RawDigger: detecting posterization in SONY cRAW/ARW2 files"

http://www.rawdigger.com/howtouse/sony-craw-arw2-posterization-detection

4 upvotes
Vitruvius
By Vitruvius (1 week ago)

That RawDigger article is awesome! Thanks you very much. I always wondered why my Sony RAW files were not as clean as I expected. Would be nice if they offered a true RAW output mode as an option and perhaps disable the 12fps feature in that mode as a trade off.

0 upvotes
Boss of Sony
By Boss of Sony (2 months ago)

Is this camera better than Canon 70d or Pentax K3? Can someone help me? I have no idea.

0 upvotes
macclesfieldman
By macclesfieldman (2 months ago)

Difficult question - in some respects, the old A77 was better than the 70D. I prefered the A77 over the Canon, but it is also a matter of taste.

7 upvotes
topstuff
By topstuff (2 months ago)

If you use the back screen of the camera a lot ( live view) then the Sony is much, much better because the autofocus is much faster - this is because the Sony does not have a mirror flapping around unlike the Canon and Pentax. This also means that autofocus on video is also much better.

10 upvotes
Zvonimir Tosic
By Zvonimir Tosic (2 months ago)

It is very different. Most refined classic DSLR experience, which is also highly enjoyable, is I think one in the Pentax K-3. I believe Pentax makes best DSLRs and delivers top-notch DSLR experience, bar none.

One step below that classic and highly polished experience, and more towards the gadget level that appeases hordes, is the 70D. If you have canon lenses, maybe a good choice. But I think its OVF and usability is rather lacking, albeit there is enough gadgetry inside to keep you occupied for months.

A77 is different than both. I frankly do not understand the appeal of this line of cameras from Sony, because it is not built to provide any special aesthetic experience. A cacophony of technologies without a certain aim. I think Sony has lost the idea what matters in photography after a rather nice A100 camera, perhaps because most of it was designed directly by the ex-Minolta team.

Comment edited 2 minutes after posting
2 upvotes
Eleson
By Eleson (2 months ago)

"A cacophony of technologies without a certain aim. "

I would disagee on that.
The a77 is a long reach (APS-C 24MP) hi speed sports/BIF/action shooter:
- Hi fps rate.
- Good to great AF system.
- Low latency as you don't have to wait for mirror to flip up before the shot.
- Allowing you to use all of this even when you shoot using the LCD,
making low angle shots much easier, and BIF using LCD on a tripod,
to name a few examples.
- AF-D to set min and max focus range to never be disturbed by ostacles passing by again.

Couple this with the 70-400, 70-200, or the 300 mm lenses and you'll be second to none.

But it is not your "Let's-shoot-a-black-cat-in-the-dark-and-count-hairs" camera.

17 upvotes
ric63
By ric63 (2 months ago)

Sony hit the nail on the head years ago with it's take on live view by using a second image sensor and not lifting the mirror which was and still is so old fashioned on some other cameras. The SLT is a great evolution and innovation that other manufactures seem reluctant to do. Sony tries all sorts of new an innovative things. Some are good some are not, but they keep on trying.

10 upvotes
tbcass
By tbcass (2 months ago)

"Sony has lost the idea what matters in photography after a rather nice A100 camera, perhaps because most of it was designed directly by the ex-Minolta team."

As a former A100 owner and presently an A77/65 owner I can say with complete confidence the newer cameras are much much much better cameras in every possible way. I don't know what kind of "special aesthetic experience" you are looking for (religious experience maybe?). Me I just want to take photos and let them provide the aesthetics.

5 upvotes
ric63
By ric63 (2 months ago)

Agree TB.
Any new Sony I look forward to :-)

2 upvotes
nicolasrao
By nicolasrao (1 month ago)

I shoot birds and other moving things..If the Fps and focus tracking work..I think the other details in the image processing can be worked out easily, actions written etc. It's is the particular frame with the best action point I am interested in...if that works, that is all that is needed...GPS, WiFi I have been shooting before all this was even expected or foreseen. Keep tabs where you have been that is GPS. How can one forget where a photograph was taken?After 45+ years I can almost re-live every frame.

Comment edited 7 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
srados
By srados (2 months ago)

I hate electronic viewfinder.When I look into, my eye focus on the grid on the screen...from what the screen was made off. #1 reason that keeps me away from Sony.

3 upvotes
JosephScha
By JosephScha (2 months ago)

With 1.2M element (I know, only 300,000 RGBW pixels) I think it is possible that you would not be able to focus on the grid on the screen. Your objection may be from seeing less resolute viewfinders.

6 upvotes
K E Hoffman
By K E Hoffman (2 months ago)

There is no grid with the Sony A77 EVF.. you get more of that with some OVF textures that makes it work was a rear projection screen. IT took me a while to try the EVF and upgrade from my A700 to A77 but now I would never go back to the limited OVF system.

19 upvotes
brendon1000
By brendon1000 (2 months ago)

You should give EVFs a second change. They are getting better and better with every iteration. I HATED the EVF on my A55 when I moved from the beautiful pentaprism viewfinder on my A700.

I don't love the EVF but I don't hate it either. I no longer go wow when looking at FF viewfinders anymore and I have gotten accustomed to the advantages of the EVF . Shooting with an OVF camera now seems wrong somehow to me.

8 upvotes
Marvol
By Marvol (2 months ago)

For me the cutoff lies between the EVF of the A57 and that of the A65/NEX-6.

I accidentally got sent an A57 when I bought the A65, and that EVF I hated. It still looks like an EVF - low res, tearing, the lot.

But the higher-specced EVF in the 6-lines is absolutely gorgeous and I'm never going back to OVF.

4 upvotes
WildBill in MN
By WildBill in MN (2 months ago)

I didn't know how well I'd like the EVF, but it is now an indispensable tool. I would not go back. With it, I can do a better job of leveling the camera, getting the proper exposure by seeing a live histogram, seeing directly what will be in the image, previewing white balance, out-of-focus highlights, etc.

If the grid or any of the tools bother you, it is a simple user preference to turn one, some, or all off.

If I really like looking at things through nice glass, I'll take binoculars any day over any glass viewfinder on the planet.

4 upvotes
ric63
By ric63 (2 months ago)

You REALLY need to look into a modern OLED EVF on these Newer Sony. You can comment back here after doing so. I'm sure you will be impressed. There are no grids, lines or anything they are just wow!

4 upvotes
tbcass
By tbcass (2 months ago)

I used OVFs for 35 years and now EVFs. I will never go back because the advantages far outweigh the disadvantages.

5 upvotes
ric63
By ric63 (2 months ago)

We agree on so many things Cass.
Even my A700 is ridiculous now compared to RX10 EVF.
JUst wish they put the NEX6/A77 OLED into it :-(

2 upvotes
peevee1
By peevee1 (2 months ago)

"I hate electronic viewfinder.When I look into, my eye focus on the grid on the screen...from what the screen was made off. "

Poor thing. Did you dictate this message to your secretary because you cannot work on a computer monitor?

0 upvotes
EinsteinsGhost
By EinsteinsGhost (2 months ago)

Impressive specs, lower launch price than the a77.

10 upvotes
Lucas_
By Lucas_ (2 months ago)

I applaud Sony for this new version of the A77! I had an A77 for a bit over one year before changing to FF with the A99, and loved it. As the reviewer said, Sony kept all the good features the camera had and improved on the ones that needed some upgrade in a quite ingenious way. I just hope a similar treatment is done on the A99 when the time comes ( maybe to show at Photokina..? )

Comment edited 32 seconds after posting
8 upvotes
Prognathous
By Prognathous (2 months ago)

They didn't keep all the good features. They removed several features, with the most important ones being the AF Assist and the GPS. The switch to the new hotshoe was already debated during the A99 launch and remains very much questionable with the A77 MkII.

8 upvotes
leonche64
By leonche64 (2 months ago)

With the higher sensitivity of the sensor, the AF lamp is unneeded. In other words, situations where it would have been activated on the 77 because the light was too low to focus, the II can focus in those situations. Below that threshold, like on the 77, the flash is needed anyway. I think the loss of GPS was a result of 2 things. The Sony survey we got last year that asked how much we used it, and the the number of add on units that Canikon sell. I don't think they are big movers in this segment of the market. The new hotshoe was absolutely necessary. The old hotshoe was for flash only. At present, the new does flash, remote audio, spot light, and in the future will provide an interface between camera bodies that will allow for integrated photo options, and many other things. That is progress man.

Comment edited 2 minutes after posting
7 upvotes
Prognathous
By Prognathous (2 months ago)

Leon, as I wrote before, the flash is not a good replacement for the AF Assist lamp as it's very distracting and far less effective (as it does not project patterned light). It's really a terrible option if you're shooting using ambient light you don't want to blind your subjects with the flash.

As for the hotshoe, it was possible to extend the old shoe with additional contacts, but a far simpler solution would be to just change the protocol when a new flash or device is detected. USB uses only 4 contacts, and there's no doubt that it's more than enough to handle any communication required. The real reason Sony changed the shoe is because they gave up trying to educate Canon and Nikon users who kept pointing to it as a disadvantage compared to their beloved ISO shoe, not knowing that it is in fact a far superior solution.

http://keppler.popphoto.com/blog/2007/01/shoe_fetish.html

2 upvotes
leonche64
By leonche64 (2 months ago)

I understand your point, but if I understand the review, it means that the camera will focus in the same darkened environmental conditions without the lamp that the 77 couldn't, so it was not needed. If I misunderstood, and it is just that strobe light effect that my A7D had, then it is boo boo.

1 upvote
ABracken
By ABracken (2 months ago)

I'l wait for the hasselblad version!

16 upvotes
kcccc
By kcccc (2 months ago)

And I can make a wooden grip for you if that's what you want :)

5 upvotes
Richard Murdey
By Richard Murdey (2 months ago)

Is there a fundamental issue which means on-sensor PD is worse than the off-sensor variety? Otherwise you'd think SLT's days are somewhat numbered...

2 upvotes
abortabort
By abortabort (2 months ago)

Yes. The sensors on a dedicated PDAF are much bigger and as such more accurate as well as being more sensitive. There is a reason why on sensor PDAF shuts off at certain light levels. Also those cameras use CDAF for focus, the PDAF are 'assist' points. For a camera with PDAF lenses these are not enough. The 70D with all it's PDAF points doesn't really perform better than the original A77, which had very average (and near lowest in class) dedicated PDAF. Though the extra spread of the 70D OSPDAF does have some advantages.

1 upvote
Prognathous
By Prognathous (2 months ago)

abortabort, if there's one thing traditional PDAF isn't (compared to anything on sensor) it's accurate. As an A77 owner I can't wait for Sony to switch to on-sensor PDAF. The tradeoff between performance and accuracy is much better balanced with this technology.

1 upvote
WildBill in MN
By WildBill in MN (2 months ago)

Regarding the accuracy of a separate focus sensor, one must keep in mind that it can be calibrated. The light path must be exactly the same length from the lens to the focus sensor as it is from the lens to the image sensor. The a77 has microadjust because of that, but I found it better to get the body calibrated, and then use microadjust if even necessary.

0 upvotes
peevee1
By peevee1 (2 months ago)

"Yes. The sensors on a dedicated PDAF are much bigger and as such more accurate"

Bigger sensor cannot be more accurate. The sensor needs to be the size of a pixel to provide the pixel-level accuracy.
All those separate PDAFs are not accurate anyway, only 1 point working at f/2.8? How is it going to be accurate for a f/1.4 lens? f/1.2 like the one Canon, Fuji, Pana have?
And all that sensor adjustment, which works on certain focus distance but does not work on others, on a certain FL (for zooms) but off on others... It is simply an outdated film-era technology when you could not read data from film in real time.

0 upvotes
William Koehler
By William Koehler (2 months ago)

A handy specification to include would be maximum video clip length(time).

0 upvotes
brendon1000
By brendon1000 (2 months ago)

Most cameras can record a max of 29 minutes video to avoid the higher taxes dedicated video cameras attract.

0 upvotes
Andy Crowe
By Andy Crowe (2 months ago)

Some companies only apply that limit to European models (eg. Panasonic) and models sold outside the EU have no clip length limit.

0 upvotes
tbcass
By tbcass (2 months ago)

I don't think there is a limit. With AVCHD there is a 2GB limit per file but when the camera reaches 2GB it saves that file and without interruption immediately starts recording another file. These files can then be easily combined with a photo editor.

3 upvotes
Michael Ma
By Michael Ma (2 months ago)

Sometimes GPS comes in handy when trying to remember exactly where you took it.

I think people are oversensitive to private data that no one would ever care about. OK, so you went to Yosemite National Park and a TGIF for a company dinner. Guess what, no one cares.

9 upvotes
Martin Brossman
By Martin Brossman (2 months ago)

I am disappointed they took off the GPS. I use it with my A77. Impressed with other additions.

5 upvotes
PiscesNH69
By PiscesNH69 (2 months ago)

totally agree! I was just on vacation for three weeks and GPS helped a lot knowing where the pics came from.

3 upvotes
Dave Oddie
By Dave Oddie (2 months ago)

I use GPS on my A77 all the time. It is never off. With Lightroom it is very useful to see where photos were taken and if anyone ever travels extensively it is a boon.

Why do Sony do this type of thing?

WiFi to a phone is no substitute as even if the phone can tag the photos or use an app store GPS data for later manual addition most smart phones battery life is not up to the task of long term use.

5 upvotes
srados
By srados (2 months ago)

By PiscesNH69 (2 hours ago)

totally agree! I was just on vacation for three weeks and GPS helped a lot knowing where the pics came from.
------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Unless you took 6 month trip around the world so you need to remember, THAN I will find GPS useful.Technology in these devices is underused by ordinary 30-40 year old.I do not use GPS I still use my brain to remember.Also you can look at the image and remember, don't you?

5 upvotes
Timbukto
By Timbukto (2 months ago)

Or what if you take pictures of your children, and many years from now they reflect upon any one of those pictures and have the thought...boy wouldn't it be cool to visit that *exact* location again? I have GPS on my 6D and I'm glad its there. Sometimes useful technology is useful.

I wasn't born in a hospital, but in a house in Los Angeles near the Dodger Stadium. And I moved *a lot* as a child through various apartments, condos, and homes and various schools. Had technology been capable of recording GPS with pictures, I would know a lot more about my own childhood than I do now.

Comment edited 4 minutes after posting
6 upvotes
K E Hoffman
By K E Hoffman (2 months ago)

The trick is get an app the creates GPX files.. and sync the clocks on your camera and phone. There is at least one plug in that will read the file find the shots that match the time and batch GEOTAG the, and I know my phone GPS is a lot better at locking on even in some buildings than the camera GPS. I liked knowing it was there.. but won't missed it and on a shoot like a vacation .. would set up the GEOTAGGING plug in.

1 upvote
Jabba23
By Jabba23 (2 months ago)

@Timbukto are you saying that you take such a memorable picture and you or your kids can't even recall where that place is?

0 upvotes
Timbukto
By Timbukto (2 months ago)

No I do not know the actual geographical locations of much of my childhood as I did not grow up in the same house or go to the same schools and moved quite a bit. Even if I were to ask my father, I doubt he'd have the best memory of each location! Yet a photo record with GPS coordinates would instantly and easily identify a lot. GPS is not only for you to remember what happened last week, it is for you to remember things 30+ years ago. Or if these pictures interest grandchildren 60 years past and so on. I actually have a very good memory of many *pictures* of myself taken by my father when I was very young, had I also had the ability to see geotagging on each of these pictures, it would be even more interesting. I don't see how anyone who is not a complete narcissist not see the potential value of GPS or geotagging.
Not every picture has to be a 'landmark' picture or be about what happened last week. Not everywhere you go needs to be a 'franchise', or every memory a commodity.

Comment edited 2 times, last edit 6 minutes after posting
1 upvote
ric63
By ric63 (2 months ago)

To be honest if someone can't remember where they took there photos then they may have a bit of a problem.
I have had GPS on many cameras and switch it off the moment I get it.
The only thing I thought it might be good for was constructing a world map with some points where I have been, but I can do that without the GPS function. To me anyway it's a croc of----------

1 upvote
contadorfan
By contadorfan (2 months ago)

PaintshopProx6 does a good job of geotagging photos if you decided afterwards you'd like to add a geotag. I think other PP software do also. I never use GPS in camera because of the battery drain issue, but find that I can easily use PP software if I really feel compelled to add GPS coordinates. Sometimes I can remember the location precisely. Other times, no, but exact precision isn't necessary -- town name is good enough.

0 upvotes
Scottelly
By Scottelly (2 months ago)

I can't believe the key differences table above does not include the new "standard-style" hot shoe! The old A77 had the proprietary Sony slot-style hot shoe. WTF?

6 upvotes
antares103
By antares103 (2 months ago)

Why would we not expect the new style hotshoe? Sony has not made a Minolta style hotshoe since the A99 was introduced (at least)

1 upvote
Prognathous
By Prognathous (2 months ago)

The table also fails to mention the removal of the AF Assist lamp and 3D Sweep Panorama mode.

2 upvotes
Scottelly
By Scottelly (2 months ago)

The "key differences" table is SUPPOSED to identify the DIFFERENCES, of which the hot shoe for the flash is one. They should have listed the removal of the 3D Sweep Panorama mode and the lack of the AF Assist lamp too. If there are things that shouldn't be listed in that table, such as stuff that is not different, like the viewfinder and the video mode, and there is stuff that should be listed, such as the issues I just mentioned and things like the locking mode dial. I see they have edited the chart now . . . or I was mistaken and the information was there, when I read it, but I missed it. It's difficult to tell with these "live" articles! ;)

2 upvotes
ric63
By ric63 (2 months ago)

WTF?
No panorama?

0 upvotes
tbcass
By tbcass (2 months ago)

Yes it does Panorama just not 3D panorama, a rather useless gimmick.

5 upvotes
new boyz
By new boyz (2 months ago)

I have no complaint about using pre flash as focus assist. When focus lamp is needed, you're doing flash photography anyway. Serves as red eye reduction mechanism as well.

0 upvotes
Tonio Loewald
By Tonio Loewald (2 months ago)

Speaking as someone who virtually never uses flash and sometimes needs a focus-assist light, I have to disagree.

6 upvotes
SteveY80
By SteveY80 (2 months ago)

My ring flash doesn't have a focus assist lamp, making one on the camera useful occasionally.

The biggest issue, though, is that using the flash generally doesn't work that well. At least that's my experience of this feature on the A57.

0 upvotes
Scottelly
By Scottelly (2 months ago)

I have a serious complaint about it. They should include an infra-red-only bean projector and NOT have pre-flash for every use of a flash for shooting in auto-focus. Why? Because at a party, like a wedding, someone often wants to get candid shots, and they CAN do this, if there is no warding to the people that someone is taking their photo, until the flash goes off. Then it is too late, and the moment is captured. That alone is a good reason for NOT requiring a "pre-flash" for shooting in auto-focus mode in really dim light. Other reasons abound . . . such as when someone is trying to capture photos of animals in the dark. Yes, some animals don't care, and some animals see infra-red light, so they might be startled by infra-red light beams anyway, but many animals would run off, if there is a series of flashes fired for the camera to focus, making it useless to shoot the photo. Another reasons is: using the flash is likely to draw more power from the battery.

5 upvotes
abortabort
By abortabort (2 months ago)

You only need the assist beam when there isn't enough light to focus. Being that the new AF system can focus down to much lower light levels this is unlikely to be any difference between A77 with assist beam and A77 II without (except the advantage of not having to use the assist beam of course).

1 upvote
K E Hoffman
By K E Hoffman (2 months ago)

Not sure how someone would get a AF lamp to work with the RING FLASH blocking it.. The reality is that a lot of the newer lenses with the wider aperture's people want.. with the hood along with hands often blocked the AF light.. So if it were in a good position I like it.. but this may be more annoying and more reliable.

2 upvotes
Prognathous
By Prognathous (2 months ago)

abortabort, I'm sure the new AF systems does work in really low light, but only when the subject is high contrast test pattern. It'll be a completely different matter when the subject is of the more common (breathing) sort, where the pattern projected by the AF Assist lamp makes a world of a difference. I can tell you from experience that it does when you approach lower "supported" EVs with other cameras, including the original A77.

0 upvotes
Andy Crowe
By Andy Crowe (2 months ago)

@Scottelly Don't most pro grade flash guns have a built-in IR flash assist bulb? Wouldn't a wedding photographer be using one of these?

0 upvotes
Scottelly
By Scottelly (2 months ago)

Andy I use a radio remote and light the whole room with flash, and I've seen other photographers shooting weddings this way too, but I still need to focus, and frankly, the flash popping up would be a hindrance (maybe not even work for me). At least this camera should focus better in low light, without the assist beam. Sometimes people want to use the on-camera flash to capture a candid moment though, but a pre-flash is going to kill that moment. I'm talking about using this camera in all sorts of situations, not just a specific type of shooting. There are SOME situations where this new "feature" is not a problem or where it is actually an advantage, but I don't like it at all.

0 upvotes
maxeythecat
By maxeythecat (2 months ago)

Sorry but GPS belongs in your car, not your camera. ' Nuff said.

6 upvotes
Photoworks
By Photoworks (2 months ago)

Sure ... but what if you have a really bad memory and forget where the Grand Canyon or Eiffel Tower is located? I was recently looking at some images I shot of the Colosseum and, for a minute, I thought it may have been in New York. Thankfully I was able to resolve this conundrum by making use of the all important GPS data.

7 upvotes
Ben Ramsey
By Ben Ramsey (2 months ago)

Sorry, but the Sony name belongs on your Walkman, not on your camera.

Hey look, I can say absurd things too. Some like it and find it useful (as Sony also did before), so why does it 'not belong'?

6 upvotes
AbrasiveReducer
By AbrasiveReducer (2 months ago)

There are places in the world--not many--that are not as instantly recognizable as the Grand Canyon or Eiffel Tower. So, for those rare occasions, GPS might be useful. Even if you don't use it, its hard to see what harm it causes, unless you're concerned the folks from Area 57 are tracking your photos.

8 upvotes
Scottelly
By Scottelly (2 months ago)

WRONG. I have dozens of photos that I have NO IDEA where I was, when I shot them. But it would be nice to be able to identify the location some day, when/if I publish those photos in a book or something. Many of these "pro-sumer" cameras are used by people to shoot photos on vacation. After 6 or 7 vacations, it's nice to be able to look at the map and pick the photos of places by location. This is easily done by programs that can map the locations of where photos were shot . . . like iPhoto and Aperture. Even Google's Picasa does this, I believe. There are other reasons, but that is just a start. You can turn off the GPS if you're afraid it is going to drain your battery, but from my own experience with a Sony A55, which was known for having terrible battery life, because its battery was so tiny, the GPS does NOT draw a lot of power. I was able to shoot hundreds of photos with that camera, and if I shot a lot in a few hours I could shoot over 1,000 per charge. (RAW+JPG)

7 upvotes
SteveY80
By SteveY80 (2 months ago)

A natural history internet circle I belong to asks that the location where pictures were taken be included with any images submitted.

A year after taking the shot, I'm not necessarily going to remember the location of a butterfly I snapped while walking in the countryside. The sky behind a bird in flight doesn't generally contain any famous landmarks to use as a reference for its location.

If nothing else a GPS would save some detective work, like having to look through landscape shots taken on the same day to work out where I was.

10 upvotes
Antony John
By Antony John (2 months ago)

Once upon a time one used to use something called pencil and paper to make notes where one took a photograph.
Not only could one record the location but also pertinent information about the subject - perhaps things like atmospheric conditions.
Now a recording facility on a camera would be a good idea for the same purpose.
BTW, As for 'Area 57' I assume everyone knows that when one turns off one's mobile it doesn't mean that it's actually shut down just because the screen goes blank?

Comment edited 3 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
T3
By T3 (2 months ago)

"Sorry but GPS belongs in your car, not your camera"...so says the guy who doesn't own a smart phone, and who still lives in the year 2005, LOL!

Comment edited 35 seconds after posting
1 upvote
braisim
By braisim (2 months ago)

I have to say I don;t understand why GPS has been replaced with WiFi/NFC. I am an A77 owner and I do find the GPS useful. Frankly I struggle to see what real benefit WiFi would give me. The best quality images from the A77 measure some 24 MB. So I can transfer this to my phone (after having set all of that up on my smartphone) and then post it on flickr or facebook. And then have that transfer take 10 minutes as I'm in an area without 3G let alone 4G and then have my carrier charge me for all of that data transfer, because I'm abroad. And then have my smartphone battery last only 6 hours instead of a full day. I don't see the point. On a camera like this, unless one wants to use remote control (which seems like a pretty niche activity) I don;t see the value of WiFI/NFC. Please educate me.

2 upvotes
ZoomZoom Diva
By ZoomZoom Diva (2 months ago)

The NFC is tempting to be as an easy way to communicate with my LG Smartphone. I also don't take pictures where GPS matters much as they are generally of events and historic sites.

0 upvotes
Scottelly
By Scottelly (2 months ago)

Dear braisim, if you really don't understand the advantage of having the ability to wirelessly control the camera as well as transfer the photos (or preview versions of the photos) to a remote device, maybe you need to think a little about the ways people use their cameras. Here is just one example:

A photographer who shoots small birds with a long lens usually uses a blind, but can not take the blind everywhere that she shoots, so she buys a very long telephoto lens. Still, the birds she shoots are very wary. She got the new Sony A77 with Wi-Fi, and she was able to set up her camera and move far away and control the camera via wi-fi with her smartphone, controlling where the camera focuses and when it shoots photos. Another photographer uses a series of cameras to photograph races remotely, using an iPad. Another photographer uses the wi-fi for shooting from very high positions, where the screen on the back of the camera is too far away to see well. These are all valid scenarios.

3 upvotes
zubs
By zubs (2 months ago)

I don't care for GPS data on a photo. Not a show stopper. Main thing is image quality.

Comment edited 31 seconds after posting
4 upvotes
Scottelly
By Scottelly (2 months ago)

Do you know that the GPS can be turned off? Many people WANT the GPS feature. Why not include it? It's not like it can be put in there with an upgrade later! They put GPS in little point-and-shoot cameras and lesser A-series cameras, like the A65. Why WOULDN'T the include it in this high-end camera?!?

8 upvotes
T3
By T3 (2 months ago)

Yeah, well, people like yourself used to say the same thing about EXIF data in digital photos. "I don't need no stinking digital photos that have all the image data embedded in it! My film photos ain't got it, so I don't see the point of it!" LOL.

1 upvote
Claudio Galli
By Claudio Galli (2 months ago)

Who cares if you don't care?
Claudio

0 upvotes
nicolasrao
By nicolasrao (1 month ago)

I have no practical experience of GPS and battery drain, on the other hand I positively know that Wifi and 3g-4g etc drain your phone battery visibly... something that can be seen and verified simply by toggling on/off for a short while... big difference. Not so with GPS. Try it on your phone..it will show.. the same applies to camera too and yes Geo tagging nature shots are very useful with hardly any price tag...why not. I only commented on this earlier as I find it one of the less important specs for a quality and autofocus minded person. Image quality and speed of focus cannot be put on the same value plane as GPS or WiFI for that matter.

Comment edited 3 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
Gesture
By Gesture (2 months ago)

These cameras are so refined, full-featured, technolgically advanced. What's the "end game" of the modern camera?

2 upvotes
William Koehler
By William Koehler (2 months ago)

There is no end game. It is the treadmill all of them walk. If there were an end game, then the cameras would become commodities and at least half the manufacturers would go out of business.

3 upvotes
Scottelly
By Scottelly (2 months ago)

It will be completely automated, following you around and doing your bidding, based on your thoughts, which will be read by a series of sensors implanted under your skin and projected via ultra-wi-fi through a chip in the back of your neck to the cam-bot drone, which follows you around. The drone will be able to "fly" under water and far away from you. There is more, but I don't want to write a book here.

3 upvotes
nicolasrao
By nicolasrao (1 month ago)

Art, creativity and knowledge of photography be damned. I might as well have been brain dead these past 45 + years clicking a button.
Ha ha! You got it right there.
Takes all the pleasure of knowing what you are doing and getting there by learning smart. Camera's should be under your command not expected to do everything by themselves duh!

0 upvotes
Sergey Borachev
By Sergey Borachev (2 months ago)

With an IBIS, advanced AF features, and continuous viewing in the viewfinder, this looks like the perfect camera to use the Sigma 18-35mm f/1.8.

10 upvotes
Scottelly
By Scottelly (2 months ago)

They took away the GPS?!? WTF?!?

Though I am glad they have made a new, updated version of the A77, I can't understand Sony. I won't buy it without GPS. I will get the old one instead . . . or I'll get a Nikon D5300. I don't really need the speed shooting capability, and until I see that Sony is committed to this line of cameras by making three or four new, kick-ass lenses for them, I will stay away from their newest cameras. The mirrorless cameras don't have two of the features I have come to expect from Sony - in-camera image stabilization and GPS, and now Sony drops GPS from their newest A77! I think they dropped the ball too.

I was thinking Sony should make one of these without an anti-aliasing filter. Hopefully they will make an A79 with that and GPS . . . and a bigger buffer . . . and two memory card slots (fast ones - maybe UHS2).

I wonder how fast the memory card slot in this camera is.

5 upvotes
RichRMA
By RichRMA (2 months ago)

They swapped it for "wifi." Because God knows, you HAVE to get those 24mp raws onto a smart phone immediately!!!

Comment edited 18 seconds after posting
10 upvotes
Photoworks
By Photoworks (2 months ago)

Seriously? Who has time to wait for WiFi data transfers. I want my camera to incorporate a smart phone so that my images appear instantaneously on my Twit-ter account.

0 upvotes
Scottelly
By Scottelly (2 months ago)

I think the main reason for wi-fi is the ability to control the camera via smart phones and tablets. Cameras should be able to transfer compressed JPEG images that are down-sized to your choice of small, medium, or large "preview" images, so the wi-fi can transfer them at a reasonable speed for reviewing on a tablet or other computer screen during a photo shoot.

2 upvotes
PaulDavis
By PaulDavis (2 months ago)

I use the wifi on my a7 way more than I have ever used gps so if they to put one or the other they made the right choice. Seems like they could fit both in though. It's always disturbing when they remove a feature that was in a previous version.

1 upvote
camcom12
By camcom12 (2 months ago)

Totally agree...no GPS, no sale. GPS 'was' one of the defining features of this line of cameras.

5 upvotes
Dave Oddie
By Dave Oddie (2 months ago)

"Totally agree...no GPS, no sale. GPS 'was' one of the defining features of this line of cameras."

Same here. May have been tempted to upgrade but not now.

They lost me from the compact mirrorless area with Nex minus IBIS (another feature I won't do without having used it) and now they just lost another potential sale.

This is par for the course with Sony though who have done it before. Debates used to rage about what was missing from the A2xx/A3xx/4xx/5xx cameras compared to what the old A100 had.

Why don't they understand "upgrade" does not mean removing useful features from a camera?

2 upvotes
abortabort
By abortabort (2 months ago)

Cool, so I guess you will buy the 'other' DSLR type cameras with IBIS and GPS then?

2 upvotes
leonche64
By leonche64 (2 months ago)

If something has to go in order to hit a price point, GPS was the logical choice. Wifi gives you a lot more functions than just GPS, and may be able to via an app of some sort. Much like the old hot shoe was just for flash, while the new one has many additional functions.

0 upvotes
Scottelly
By Scottelly (2 months ago)

This camera is $400 more than the old A77. NOTHING had to go in order to make it. GPS and wi-fi fit just fine in some of the smallest cameras Sony makes, so they would both fit in the A77 just fine. The A65 is MUCH smaller than the A77, and it has GPS. You don't think they could fit both in the A77? You would have to be on crack to believe they HAD to delete GPS from this camera. They didn't. This is just corporate stupidity. Sony suffers from it, just like Nikon and Canon and Sigma and just about every other company does . . . unfortunately. Presumably Sony has seen the acceptance of their mirrorless cameras, which do not have GPS, as an indication that people don't care about GPS. Let's hope they don't also make a decision to remove image stabilization, which is missing from their mirrorless cameras too. What I can't figure out is how they put GPS in cameras that cost $300, but leave it out of cameras that cost over $1,000. It just doesn't make sense.

0 upvotes
steve_hoge
By steve_hoge (2 months ago)

GPS is important to me...seems like in this day and age they could at least incorporate it into a very compact purpose-built hot-shoe accessory with in-camera firmware support.

Comment edited 3 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
nicolasrao
By nicolasrao (1 month ago)

@Scottelly..Regarding your point about transfer of images.. I see the point of instant transfer to a largish tablet or iPad when seated inside a hide for hours on a nature shoot. It would be something invaluable. Like taking a tethered shot in a studio. But can any camera really do that in real life... would be fantastic!

Comment edited 2 times, last edit 3 minutes after posting
0 upvotes
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